A Lifelong Love of Woodworking

 

 

“When you’re signing a piece of furniture, you’re thinking lots of things; you’re thinking, if I’m putting my name on this thing, I’ve got an attachment to it, it better be good. But you’re also thinking, who is this going to? And when they receive that piece, they will probably see this signature and wonder, “Who is this Robert Fisher guy?” 

-Robert Fisher

Craftsman since 1988

 

 

 

Bob Fisher

 

A native Mainer, Robert (Bob) Fisher’s appreciation and knowledge of fine woodworking and craft was a family affair. “My grandfather and father both worked with their hands, and it just came naturally and felt comfortable for me to be working with my hands,” he says. His technical appreciation for the craft began with his grandfather, who had a small workshop off the kitchen of their home. He remembers that it was meticulously clean—partly due to his grandmother’s request not to see one speck of dust enter her house. Every shelf and pegboard was filled with hand planes, saws, hand and power tools. “My grandfather set up a little workbench for me in the corner of his shop, and I would go in there with my brother and bang nails,” says Bob. As a hobby woodworker and carpenter, Bob’s grandfather would do special projects with him. “The first piece we built together was a pretty big birdhouse. It had no fewer than ten holes in it. I still have it to this day. I always loved working with wood, but it wasn’t until high school that I developed a newfound appreciation for the craft after building a kneehole pine desk. It had a bank of drawers on the side, and I just loved doing it. I loved the creativity, troubleshooting different elements, and seeing the finished product. That solidified my desire to work in this realm.” 

 

 

on the left is a detail shot of the Dr. Whites drawers showing the dovetails. ON the right is craftsman Bob Fisher cutting a piece of wood on the tablesaw.

 

But it was his aunt who was instrumental in giving him an appreciation for the quality of Thos. Moser furniture. “I had a great relationship with her, and to hear her talk about Tom Moser with her friends, she raved about his craftsmanship and style. That made a huge impact on me. It made me think that if I’m going to work somewhere, I want to work with someone headed in the right direction, and to me, that was Tom Moser,” says Bob. 

 

A craftsman works on a piece of furniture in a workshop. He is using wooden clamps to hold a piece of wood in place.

 

“I’ve been here for 35 years. I think that comes out to over a thousand pieces of furniture I have built. When I first started, I worked with Tom in the New Gloucester, Maine workshop doing Companion Manufacturing. In the fall of 1988, I moved to the Auburn workshop and started working in the chair department. In 2007, I settled into the cases department, and I have been there ever since.” 

 

on the left is craftsman Bob Fisher workon on the lower bottom leg of a Dr. Whites Chest. ON the right is the Dr. White's chest in a living room with white walls and a doorway that looks onto a staircase.

 

On a Friday afternoon, Bob rolls a completed Dr. White’s Chest up the ramp toward the finishing department. “This is undoubtedly the most complex piece of furniture I build. It takes over 80hrs to complete, and its design requires many types of joinery. It’s a rewarding piece to build. What I love about woodworking,” he says, “is the idea of taking the raw material, a tree standing in the woods, and turning that into something you never thought possible— and not only making it functional for someone but creating a beautiful piece of furniture to have in your home for generations.” 

Signature of craftsman Robert Fisher

 

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